Our Organisation Search
Quick Links
Toggle: Topics
Placeholder image

Tips for milking during COVID-19

06 April 2020
Type Factsheet

Milking is one of the essential tasks on a dairy farm. During these extraordinary times of COVID-19, it is essential to keep yourself and your milkers safe at milking time.

Before milking 

  • Disinfect your boots in a fresh foot bath before entering the milking parlour or dairy
  • Wash your hands thoroughly with warm water and soap for 20 seconds as per HSE guidelines
  • Use nitrile disposable gloves and a clean parlour apron or parlous suit
  • Use your own personal protective equipment (PPE) and don’t share with other milkers

 Milking in Herringbone Parlours

  • Where possible, milk with one person in the pit
  • Disinfect your gloves and parlour apron /suit regularly through-out the milking
  • Where two people are needed, split the parlour into two zones , i.e. in a 30 unit parlour, let one milker look after units 1-15 and the other milker look after units 16-30 to enable physical distancing
  • Although bunny-hopping is the most efficient way to milk cows in a large herringbone parlour, it is safer to split the parlour into two zones as outlined above for the duration of COVID-19 

Milking in Rotary Parlours

  • Milk with one person putting on the clusters (where possible)
  • Where two people normally put on the clusters it is worth considering cutting this back to one person during COVID-19 to ensure milker safety
  • If two people are needed it is essential that staff keep at least 2 metres apart

After Milking 

  • Wash down and disinfect your parlour apron or suit
  • Remove your gloves correctly, discard and wash your hands thoroughly with warm water and soap following HSE guidelines
  • COVID-19 stays on plastic and steel surfaces for 72 hours. Disinfect shared work areas. Pay particular attention to clusters, bulk tank outlet and door handles etc.
  • Minimise staff contact as much as possible
  • Follow your co-op guidelines regarding the provision of soap, paper towel and the regular disinfection of surfaces
  • We are living in extraordinary times so please Stay Safe